After comprehensively looking at Virtus.Pro, let’s have a look at their archrivals, Team Secret. A team that has not missed a single TI since 2014, but has never hit the top four.
The 2018/2019 season started well for Secret with a victory at ESL One Hamburg 2018. At the next tournament, The Kuala Lumpur Major , the team took second place, losing only to Virtus.pro in the grand final.In the next DPC championship The Chongqing Major, Puppey got its revenge over VP as they beat the CIS side in the final.
The best season in the history of Team Secret
This season, Team Secret won 77.8% of matches. This indicator is the best among all participants of The International 2019. At the same time, Virtus.pro became the most uncomfortable opponent of Secret – out of nine matches, only three ended with a victory for the Puppey roster. For the DPC season 2018/2019 Secret earned $ 1.44 million in prize money, this is almost 18% of the team’s winnings since its formation.
Over the past year, Secret has drafted 115 heroes out of the 117. Puppey has never used only Techies and Razor. Its players can play almost every hero to perfection. However, the captain does not forget about the strengths of his teammates: Most often he picked signature Rubick for YapzOr, Monkey King for MidOne and Morphling for Nisha. At the same time, Morphling is the most banned hero in matches against Secret.
Will Puppey win the second Aegis?
Many analysts will consider Team Secret to be the favorite of The International 2019. Statistics also speak in favor of the team – by most indicators this season has become the best in the history of the team.
The team gathered the best talent, led by one of the most respected and experienced captains of the world. But just the last factor occasionally prevents the roster from winning on big occasions. Puppey often comes up with strange ideas during drafts on decisive maps. Instead of reliable and proven strategies, he goes for unfamiliar picks, who are not considered meta, and loses. If he manages to keep his cool, and his roster perform as brilliantly as during the season, then Ivanov has a good chance of becoming the first person to win The International twice.
Anything can happen
Considering how the team played during the season, it is required to show the best result on TI in history. Even if everything is not perfect at the drafts, only a few teams can prevent Secret from reaching the grand finals. In decisive matches, even with perfect drafts, it depends on the execution of strategy. On the professional stage there are enough teams that are in good shape and will be looking to overthrow Team Secret. We believe the games will be decided on the smallest mistakes.